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dangerous journey into the heart of the simmering conflict. he is in damascus itself. >> reporter: the road from beirut to damascus. we drove into syria along this heavily guarded route -- checkpoint after checkpoint after checkpoint. it is now a lifeline, as damascus, the stronghold of the government of president bashar assad, becomes a city under siege. it is a dirty war, in a crucial country. just look at the map. the chaos engulfing syria threatens to spill over into iraq on one side, israel and lebanon on the other. a nightmare scenario for the u.s. the united nations now estimates that 70,000 people have been killed in the fighting, though no one really knows. a u.n. commission today called for war crimes investigations of both sides. assad's government, which has sought to crush the rebellion by any means necessary. and the rebels, many of whom are increasingly seen by ordinary
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syrians as war lords, gangsters and religious fanatics who regularly post videos of beheadings and other atrocities on youtube. damascus is quiet tonight. some light traffic. no one really walking around. 5 million people hunkered down, as the terrible war that is tearing their country apart has now arrived here, in fierce battles raging in the city's suburbs. syria's many minorities live in terror of a jihadist takeover of their country. before we came here, we visited christian refugees from syria who had fled to beirut. they said they were forced out of their villages by muslim fundamentalists -- ethnically cleansed. they supported the rebellion at first, but not now. they've lost their homes, their communities, their way of life. "we lived freely as christians," this man tells me, "putting up christmas trees and decorations,
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but now we are being targeted." a dirty war, no end in sight. we should let you know we've come to this country with the permission of the government who want the other side of the story told. but there's no doubt the rebellion here has changed. and ordinary syrians increasingly just want the fighting to stop and they dread the chaos that's been unleashed here. bashar assad himself seems to know this. the man the u.s. said must go told a group of visitors today, "we are sure we will win." diane? >> all right, terry moran, our thanks to you. and terry will be sending out more reports to us from inside syria in the days ahead. back here at home, it's time to fasten our seat belts. for 32 straight days now, gasoline prices have soared, now a four-month high. $3.73 a gallon. and we learned today how much higher they'll rise in april and when they should start falling again. the newest member of our abc
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team, a veteran business reporter, linzie janis, here to explain. linzie, welcome. >> reporter: thank you very much, diane. you know, americans spent 4% of their household budget on gas last year. it's the biggest spike in three decades and it makes the recent spike all the more worrying. the pearsons know what they're not looking for in the family car. >> i don't want an suv, it's too much price -- it's too pricey on gas. >> reporter: they're giving up more space for more miles to the gallon. it's their number one priority. >> close to $4 already, i think by the end of the month, it will be $4. >> reporter: prices often spike in the spring as refineries switch over to a summer blend of gasoline, but this year they're rising well ahead of schedule. in california, where some gas stations are already charging $5 a gallon -- >> i'm at $64, it usually takes me, like, 50 bucks to fill up. >> reporter: drivers are starting to make sacrifices. >> dinners out. movie night.
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things like that. >> reporter: the big fear is that rising gas prices threaten a fragile economic recovery. >> if we hit $4 a gallon on regular unleaded across the country, that would do a lot of damage. nothing hurts more, more quickly, than rising gasoline prices. >> reporter: the price tracker at predicts gas will reach $3.75 to $4.05 by april. as the pearsons shop for their new car, they worry about their annual trip to south carolina in april. last year's trip cost them $300 in gas. according to our calculations, their trip would cost just $230 in their new fuel-efficient car. mom and dad may be focused on fuel, but young austin has a different wish. what kind of car would you like to get? >> red! >> reporter: and diane, some possible relief in sight. says that prices will probably start to head lower around memorial day. >> all right, linzie, thank you again so much and welcome to abc
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news once more. and now, we head out to the heartland. this was the scene in fargo, north dakota, today. whiteout conditions turning an intersection into an obstacle course. and now, another winter blast on the move, expected to wallop the plains with blizzard conditions, from the mountains of california to the midwest in the coming days. and with snowstorms so much in the forecast, there was a climate change headline today from some of the nation's top scientists, saying we should brace ourselves for less snow, but more blizzards. so, what does that mean? abc's david kerley explains. >> reporter: it doesn't seem to make sense. blistering blizzards. >> was up during the middle of the night and it looked like a blizzard outside. >> reporter: shoveling your sidewalk, you may be asking, this is global warming? >> i'm ready for spring. yeah, i'm definitely sick of winter. >> reporter: even the comics are getting in on the snow show. >> global warming is a total hoax.
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and i'll tell you how i know. because it's cold -- today -- where i live. >> reporter: but new studies confirm what scientists have been saying. we will get less snow. rutgers scientists have now documented a million square mile decline of snow cover over nearly 50 years. and a new study from princeton scientists predicts global snowfall over the next 50 years will shrink more than a foot. in the u.s., a 30% to 70% drop in snow by the end of this century. but when we do get snow -- watch out. >> every once in awhile, there's going to be a big storm, a kind of knockout punch. >> reporter: bigger blizzards, but less snow? scientists say that's because a warmer atmosphere can hold a lot more moisture, sucking it up from the oceans. most of it will come down as rain. but when it gets cold enough, it will turn into snow, a lot of it. and we could get hit by a monster storm. one of these studies and its predictions is based on computer
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models and some wonder, how good are those models? but climatologists say the weather patterns are already changing. >> so, get out your snow shovels. snowstorms with two, three feet that used to seem highly unusual, that may, in fact, become more typical. >> reporter: bigger storms, less snow overall. a new reality. david kerley, abc news, washington. and now, we have an update about the fire that crippled the carnival cruise ship. 4,200 people stranded on board. it was caused by a leak in a fuel line between the engines. hot oil sparking that blaze. there's no indication the leak was anything but accidental. and as of tonight, two passengers have filed suit against carnival, including one woman who claims she suffered severe dehydration and bruising from aggressive passengers on those long food lines. and now, to the new clues in the oscar pistorius murder case. tomorrow, the olympian will
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appear in court in the shooting death of his girlfriend. and tonight, abc's bazi kanani speaks with someone who has spoken directly to pistorius. >> reporter: world famous for his triumphs over adversity, oscar pistorius is facing his toughest challenge yet. facing murder charges for the death of his cover model girlfriend. in his cramped jail cell, pastor olga booysen prayed with him. >> i saw him as a really, really lonely young man, really heartbroken and sad. >> reporter: the pastor tells abc news, when she visited pistorius on sunday, he was humbled. >> oscar was also devastated about reeva's family, as well as his own. >> reporter: pistorius is currently losing the battle for public opinion in south africa, where incriminating claims are swirling in local media. new reports quoting police sources say that steroids were found in his house and investigators are testing his blood for the drug that can
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cause 'roid rage, aggressive outbursts. that a bloody cricket bat was found in his bedroom, possibly used in a violent argument before the shooting. that his girlfriend, reeva steenkamp, may have then fled to the bathroom, where she was shot at least three times through the door. a reality show steenkamp recently taped is now airing on national tv. in the first episode this weekend, a promise to sign off of the show with grace and gratitude. >> with the way the people act when you make your exit, it's so important that you even made an impact in a positive way or a negative way. and i'm going to miss you all so much. and i love you, very, very much. >> reporter: steenkamp's family is expected to make a public comment tomorrow after burying their daughter in a private ceremony, on the same day oscar pistorius is expected to make his first public comment on the case during his bail hearing. diane? >> bazi kanani reporting in from pretoria tonight.
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and tonight, we have learned that a prominent sports owner has died, jerry buss, who used the millions he made in real estate to buy the los angeles lakers for $67.5 million in 1979 and transformed them into a very flashy franchise. he paid a fortune for heavyweights like kareem abdul-jabbar, magic johnson and shaquille o'neal. the team would win ten nba championships under his ownership and become valued at a billion dollars. he had been in the hospital with cancer for more than a year. he was 80 years old. and still ahead here on "world news," for the first time, she is the leader of the pack on the nascar track. big news tonight. and we have the secret of the physical stamina that led tiny danica patrick to outrace the men, coming up next. see life in the best light.
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>> danica patrick in green. >> reporter: but after winning daytona's pole position, danica patrick is in position to change that. >> just like anybody else in this moment, i'm happy, i'm proud. >> reporter: so, how did she do it? danica credits her team, state of the art car and grueling workouts. biology tells us men's muscles outperform women's in endurance sports. and racing is like a three-hour workout. so, danica says she focuses on her upper body strength, building neck muscles like a linebacker to stay upright during those hard turns. controlling the steering wheel is like holding a medicine ball in front of you for two hours. punching the brake pedal on those turns is like pushing down 300 pounds. all the while, battling sauna-like 150 degree temperatures inside, add a body suit on that, drivers can sweat off seven pounds in a single race. is there any doubt in your mind that she's in the best physical shape that she could be? >> no doubt in my mind.
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she's constantly working out, watching her diet. >> reporter: take a look at this. danica dwarfed by her male counters. eight inches shorter, 50 pounds lighter. she's leveled the playing field despite those staggering physical differences. >> she has not set out to be the fastest girl. she's set out to be the fastest driver and she proved that. >> reporter: even the daughter of one of her fiercest competitors, jeff gordon, taking a photo not with her dad, but with danica. she's already shattered history, marking this track's fastest speed in decades. next sunday, danica patrick may just do it again. >> i don't give myself a super high chance of winning, but i give myself a chance to win, absolutely. i do think that it's possible. >> reporter: now, danica was the favorite to win the pole. that means she will start sunday's race in the front row, on the inside part of the track, leading that elite pack of 45. >> and how many pole winners have gone on to win the race? >> reporter: only nine. and the last winner was in 2000, but vegas likes her odds,
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dropping her from 18 to 1 down to 66 to 1. >> okay, still a great achievement there. thank you so much, paula faris. and coming up here, michelle obama reveals why she really got those bangs. coming up in our "instant index." [ fishing rod casting line, marching band playing ]
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and stop joint damage. enbrel may lower your ability to fight infections. serious, sometimes fatal events including infections, tuberculosis, lymphoma, other cancers, nervous system and blood disorders, and allergic reactions have occurred. before starting enbrel, your doctor should test you for tuberculosis and discuss whether you've been to a region where certain fungal infections are common. you should not start enbrel if you have an infection like the flu. tell your doctor if you're prone to infections, have cuts or sores, have had hepatitis b, have been treated for heart failure, or if you have symptoms such as persistent fever, bruising, bleeding, or paleness. [ phil ] get back to the things that matter most. ask your rheumatologist if enbrel is right for you. [ doctor ] enbrel, the number one biologic medicine prescribed by rheumatologists. at the top of our "instant index" tonight, the first lady, michelle obama, laughingly talking with our friend rachael ray about what inspired her to get those bold new bangs.
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>> this is my mid-life crisis, the bangs. i couldn't get a sports car, they won't let me bungee jump, so, instead, i cut my bangs. >> she turned 49 last month and mrs. obama says, with 50 right around the corner, bangs are the safest way to take a walk on the wild side. the first lady's interview with rachael ray will air on wednesday. and this next story gives new meaning to the term mac attack. burger king's twitter feed was hacked and instead of the burger king logo, the golden arches sneaked onto the page. and the joke message, "we just got sold to mcdonald's because the whopper flopped." it was anonymous prank. mcdonald's said they had nothing to do about it and the hacked account was quickly suspended by burger king today. and the mystery that went down with the "titanic" could be solved tonight. this was the famous scene, quiet courage, on the deck, as the band played on.
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>> all right, boys, nice and chewy, so there's no panic. wedding dance. ♪ >> well, experts believe the violin played by the band on deck has been identified. the prized possession of bandmaster wallace hartley. legend has it when hartley's body was pulled from the ocean, fully dressed, the violin, in its case, was strapped to his chest. it was later returned to his fiance, but after all these years, it's been submitted to new tests which reportedly signal it was, indeed, hartley's violin. if so, it will be auctioned in april. and if you see something you'd like to have in our "instant index," tweet it to me, @dianesawyer, i'll be reading. and coming up, with all those meteors lighting up the skies, from siberia to florida, we're going to show you something brand new that might give all of us a warning one's going to crash.
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[ coughs ] [ baby crying ] ♪ [ male announcer ] robitussin® liquid formula soothes your throat on contact and the active ingredient relieves your cough. robitussin®. don't suffer the coughequences™. and the active ingredient relieves your cough. as your life and career change, fidelity is there for your personal economy, helping you readjust your retirement plan along the way. rethink how you're invested. and refocus as your career moves forward. wherever you are today, a fidelity ira has a wide range of investment choices to help you fine-tune your personal economy. call today and we'll make it easy to move that old 401(k) to a fidelity no-fee ira. but with advair, i'm breathing better. so now i can be in the scene. advair is clinically proven to help significantly improve lung function.
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and finally tonight, all of us around the world are still gazing up at the sky after the giant meteor crashed in russia. well, now two meteor sightings have been sighted over the united states. so, experts are racing to create a system that could give earthlings more of a warning. abc's kirit radia tonight from russia. >> reporter: in the skies over california, a fireball lights up the night sky. then last night, a meteor shower in florida. all this after a giant meteor exploded over russia, traveling more than 60 times faster than
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the speed of sound. exploding in the atmosphere with the force of 30 hiroshima bombs. it's a barrage from space that has everyone asking, are we ready for the big one? some 100 tons of space debris enter earth's atmosphere every day, and while much of it lands in the ocean, experts are on the alert. >> there is a distinct possibility that one of these smaller ones is headed our way and we don't even know about it. >> reporter: they say the idea of blowing up an asteroid like bruce willis did in "armageddon" is hollywood fantasy. even if you could hit the meteor, it's unlikely to stop it. but one prominent group has another idea, straight out of a science fiction movie. >> push it into a different orbit. >> reporter: it's called sentinel. space telescopes would detect incoming objects, then unmanned spaceships would nudge them out of earth's path. they're trying to raise $200 million to make it happen and hope to launch the telescope by 2016. another project aims to give
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earthlings a head's up by 2015. the university of hawaii's atlas program thinks their telescopes could have given those residents in russia at least a day's notice. perhaps enough time to evacuate. "it's something we only saw in the movies," he said, "we never thought we would see it ourselves." as if we needed one more reminder of our planet's active and unpredictable neighborhood. kirit radia, abc news, moscow. >> and more, of course, of this at "nightline" will be along later at its new time, 12:35 a.m. eastern. and tonight, on this holiday, i'd love a chance to say hello to a friend who says hello to me every night, even though she's only 2 years old. >> diane sawyer! >> yeah, diane sawyer. >> that is melina from illinois, my favorite new star of youtube. so, melina, hello to you, and
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this man spent six years in prison for a crime he did not commit. his mother is still angry about her son's arrest. >> a man falls 100 feet to his death from a trail in a san jose park. why the recovery operation has taken most of the day. >> we're live in the sierra want to a holiday ski report and a shift in weather bringing a new storm to the bay area. >> remarkable story two of tahoe bear cubs. you'll see them being taken out of hibernation, and placed too the wild nrk a new den. >> he was wrongly convicted seven years ago on the testimony of a witness who lied but it will be another week before he is a free man. good evening. >> that convick was overturned with help from the northern california innocence project. their dedication to the case means he's about to be set
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free we're live. >> ronald ross expected to be released on friday. this after eye witness testimony used to convict him has been proven by the innocence project and the district attorney to be false. >> it's like... someone had put something on my shoulder. >> she couldn't shake the conviction of her son, ronald ross. ross served six years in prison for a crime he did not commit. >> because i know what my son co-was like. >> ross arrested after a man who was shot in this block picked him out of a six-man photo line up. and more bad news still to come. two other witnesses also fingered ross for the shooting but ross's mother says from the beginning it was a lie. >> i know he was on my couch,
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drinking beer. ⌞ñ her cries of ross's innocence was not enough to sway investigators n 2006 ross convicted of attempted murder and assault with a firearm. >> we're looking to exonerate people wrongfully convicted. >> rhonda is with the northern california innocence project with a team of law students from santa clara university and a san francisco law firm able to uncover evidence proving the innocence and helping overturn the conviction. >> they've conceded and agreed he should be freed. >> both parties will argue that fact to a judge on friday. city council member says in this case, poor police work has been done. >> we can pay greaterglalt to provide a more fair system. >> ross says

ABC World News With Diane Sawyer
ABC February 18, 2013 5:30pm-6:00pm PST

News/Business. Diane Sawyer. (2013) New. (CC)

TOPIC FREQUENCY Syria 5, Danica Patrick 4, Damascus 4, Russia 4, Diane 4, Danica 3, Ross 3, California 3, Axiron 2, Oscar Pistorius 2, Michelle Obama 2, Hartley 2, Ronald Ross 2, Paula Faris 2, Diane Sawyer 2, Steenkamp 2, Pearsons 2, Underarm 2, Rachael Ray 2, Nascar 2
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Duration 00:30:00
Scanned in San Francisco, CA, USA
Source Comcast Cable
Tuner Channel 18 (147 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 1280
Pixel height 720
Sponsor Internet Archive
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on 2/19/2013